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Monday, July 28, 2008 Jill, Community Member, asks

Q: Is a swollen armpit lymph node along with a cyst on my breast normal???

 a couple of years ago, i had a mammogram come back with an abnormality in my left breast.  I had to repeat the mammogram every 6 months.  2 weeks ago was my first official annual mammogram.  Again, it showed "something a little different" in my left breast.  Last week i had another mammogram and I demanded an ultrasound.  After waiting a very long 6 days, the nurse called me to tell me that I had a cyst on my left breast and a "benign" lymph nodes in my arm pit.  I questioned the "benign lymph node" part.  She also said that the doctor who ordered the tests hadn't seen the written report yet but she knew i was anxious. So she called me.  I was very uneasy about this  and called back only to get the nurse again who told me that it would be another day before I could talk with my doctor.  what should i do.  am i over reacting?

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Answers (1)
PJ Hamel, Health Guide
7/28/08 7:00pm

Jill, you should wait to hear from the doctor - because, in reality, that's your only choice. (S)he's the one who can fill you in on the results of your ultrasound, and what your mammogram might mean. My advice: if (s)he says "It looks like a cyst, it looks benign," ask to have a biopsy to make sure. I've known too many women whose doctors told them "It can't be cancer, it doesn't look like it, doesn't feel like it, you're too young," whatever; and then within a year, they have cancer. Advocate for yourself; it's inmportant, to know one way or the other. Otherwise, you'll just worry; and worry doesn't accomplish anything.  Good luck - PJH

ss, Community Member
4/28/09 6:27pm

I had my 2nd Br MRI - Dense fibroglandural tissue distributed thorough both breast, and several small scattered cyst. I'm very petite 5.3, under 100lb, 30 years old,  which is making even more difficult to get good mammogram imaging. In the past 1 ½, I have very painful breast, lost 40% of size, and my lymphatic nodes are very painful and periodically enlarged. My breast surgeon is refusing to perform biopsy, explained "there is nothing to take a sample of". What should I do? I want the Dr to take sample, I believe that the digital imaging is not sufficient since I have bare minimum fat tissue.

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By Jill, Community Member— Last Modified: 06/18/12, First Published: 07/28/08